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Home : 2003 : Jul : 16

    make it easy on you!
    By KarolinBess

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    I teach 3rd grade, and am embarking on a "Third Grade Workshop" essence, a Center Room. All four 3rd grade teachers will be contributing to this room which is located in the same hall. We will have access to this room on Fridays (that'll give us all week to get it "ready") and each teacher will be able to bring their classes in for 45 - 60 minutes at a time and rotate through the "workshops". Since our state test is SO stressed in THird Grade (tied to promotion), we are incorporating each workstation to tie directly to an objective on the test and trying to make it FUN FUN FUN...we have a school-wide theme for this test, so we'll also incorporate the theme into the oceans, space, etc...

    In addition to that, we're ALSO trying to streamline the centers into a "SELF-CHECK" activities. One thing I've thought about doing is placing a "PRODUCT BASKET" at the door, so that when the students are leaving the room, they drop their finished product/worksheet (if there IS one) in the basket and the tchr picks up the work as they leave the room.

    I do NOT grade them, but I do look through them to make sure they understood the assignment and completed as much of it as possible. I may give a check or smiley and hand it back... If I feel they "goofed off", and did not complete the center correctly or to the best of their ability, I put them at a seat with either the exact same activity or one that closely resembles it.

    I found that the ones that "goofed around" stuck to their task MUCH better once they realize that they couldn't participate in the rest of the centers until they really did their best.

    In trying to make them FUN, of course, some kids will be "fuddy-duddies" no matter how FUN you intend for some to be, and there will always be those who'd rather goof off than work on the activity...Just sit them out, have them write a letter to their parents or the principal about what happened during their workshop time. Make them have it SIGNED before they're allowed to return to the workshops(centers).

    One other can set up incentives for students who complete the tasks at each center and give away tickets for those students that were on task and well-behaved the entire time. Then, have a drawing at the end of the day/week.
    I call my ticket bucket a CHANCE JAR/BUCKET...the more times their name is in the JAR/BUCKET, the better CHANCE they have of getting their's pulled out...(I usually pull 2-3 names a day OR 5-7 names a week, depending on how many pencils/pencil-topped erasers or other little things I have..)

    Hope that helped...
    Anyone ELSE have ideas???

    good luck

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